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Breaking: Killers of Olufunke Olakunri, Daughter of Afenifere Leader, Sentenced to Death by Hanging

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Fidelis David in Akure

An Ondo State High Court sitting in Akure, the state capital on Friday sentenced  killers of Olufunke Olakunri, daughter of Afenifere leader to death by hanging.
They include: Lawal Mazaje from Kogi Sate; Adamu Adamu from Adamawa State; Mohammed Usman from Sokoto State.
The fourth defendant, Auwalu Abubakar from Zamfara State was however discharged and acquitted for aiding and abetting.
They were part of an eight-man bandits which ambushed the vehicle of Mrs Olakunri on July 12, 2019 along Ore-Kajola expressway and opened fire on her which resulted in her death in the process.
The defendants were arraigned on counts of armed robbery, conspiracy, conspiracy to commit felony, conspiracy to commit armed robbery, kidnapping, murder, aiding and abetting. 
Justice Williams Rotimi Olamide, held in his judgment that prosecution proved its case beyond reasonable doubt, thus, sentenced the three defendants to death by hanging.
He said: “That you, Mohammed Shehu,  Mazaje Lawal, Adamu Adamu and others now at large on or before July 12, 2019, about 9am, at Tollgate, along Ore/ljebu Ode Expressway, within the jurisdiction of this court, did murder one Ogunbiyi Matthew, aged 65 years, contrary to and punishable under Section 316 of the Criminal code, Cap36, Vol. 1 Laws of Ondo State of Nigeria, 2006.
“That you Mohammed Shehu,  Mazaje Lawal, Adamu Adamu, and others now at large on or before July 12, 2019, did kidnap one Gerald Igboayaka, thereby committing an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 3(ii) (b) of the Ondo State Anti-Kidnapping and Anti-Abduction Law, 2010.”
“Conspiracy to commit armed robbery contrary to and punishable under Section 6(b) of the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions) Act, Cap R11, Vol. 14, Lows of Federation of Nigeria, 2004. For Armed robbery, contrary to and punishable under Section 1(2) (a) & (b) of the Robbery and Firearms {Special Provisions) Act, Cop R11, Vol, 14, Laws of Federation of Nigeria, 2004. 
He noted that the defendants also committed an offence contrary and punishable under Section 516 of the Criminal Code, Cap. 37, Vol. 1, Laws of Ondo  State of Nigeria, 2006.
The prosecution counsel and Commissioner for Justice in the state, Charles Titiloye, in his reaction expressed satisfaction with the judgement.
Titiloye said, “the court has found three of the defendants guilty, it has become very clear that the three persons conspired to commit armed robbery, murder and killing of the lady and a hunter who was in the bush when they were trying to take away those in the vehicle that was conveying Mrs Olakunri.
“There was thorough investigation that spanned through three different states of the federation, Edo, Lagos and Ondo. Cogent evidence were given by the person who was in the forest with them for seven days, particularly, the driver of the deceased who was kidnapped for seven days.”
The Counsel to the second and fourth defendants, Obafemi Bawa said he will study the judgement and possibly appeal it.
“You could see that one of the defendants was discharged by the judgement of the court court. We are going to take a critical look at it, look at areas where appeal can be formulated”, Obafemi said.

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